Skip to main content

tv   Sanjay Gupta MD  CNN  March 12, 2011 7:30am-8:00am EST

7:30 am
injured. after morning prayer today, security forces confronted the tens of thousands of demonstrators packed camping outside the university in what they are calling chain square telling them to take their tents and leave. the protesters refused. the security forces started shooting at them, shooting tear gas into the crowd. dozens injured. it's quite a development. this is a few days after the president of yemen tried to make more concessions to the opposition there saying that he would work to put together a referendum for a new constitution and more reform. the opposition refused it. the protesters continue to refuse it. tens of thousands by the day in streets in yemen calling for the oust of the president. it could leave a power vacuum. if it happens, it leaves the
7:31 am
west concerned of who would fill it. andrew. >> these protests, the latest round of violence comes after the yemen president promised the white house he wouldn't use violence against his people. does it show how little leverage the u.s. has in yemen now? >> reporter: we are seeing more and more the past few weeks, it looks as though the u.s. has more leverage. we saw a comment from the president in the last few weeks saying the u.s. shouldn't meddle. foreigners shouldn't intervene in the affairs there. there was a call between john brennan, the assistant to the president for homeland security. he was there telling yemen president they were praising him for his initiative and make sure they protect the protesters there. they agreed to that.
7:32 am
today, you are seeing a crackdown, again. this is worrying to the u.s. there should be dialogue in yemen. the president is saying there should be. but we are seeing more and more violence in the streets. >> joining us live from abu dabi. that you know for that. a critical and dangerous situation is going on right now with two nuclear plants damaged by the massive quake in japan. to make a bad situation worse, an explosion at one of them today. we have the latest coming up. [ male announcer ] 95% of all americans aren't getting enough whole grain. but actually, it's never been easier to get
7:33 am
the whole grain you want from your favorite big g cereals. from cheerios to lucky charms, there's whole grain in every box. make sure to look for the white check. there's whole grain in every box. when you're a stunt woman, work can be pretty unpredictable. from knowing when my next job will be to what i'll actually be doing. so in the rest of my life i like control. especially in my finances. that's why i have slate with blueprint. i can make a plan to pay off everyday things and avoid interest, or pay down my balance faster on the big stuff. that saves money. with slate from chase, i have everything under control... ♪ ...financially. announcer: debit card control and credit card flexibility. get both with slate.
7:34 am
7:35 am
now, we are watching a serious situation going on right now with two japanese nuclear energy plants damaged by the earthquake. an explosion occurred earlier at one of the two plants. the explosion collapsed the roof
7:36 am
of one of the reactors that allowed a small amount of radioactive material to escape. a 12-mile area around the plant has been evacuated. japan's nuclear agency says the cooling system for three of the four reactors at a second plant have now failed. a scholar in washington calls fixing the problems a race against time. >> caller: this is the situation that has the potential for a nuclear catastrophe. it's basically a race against time. what has happened is that plant operators have not been able to cool down the core of, i understand of at least two reactors that contain enormous amounts of radioactivity. the back-ups were probably damaged by the tsunami or the
7:37 am
earthquake. so, there is the major effort under way to fly in the military helicopters and other power sources, batteries to keep the electricity going to allow water to circulate to remove the tremendous amount of heat that has built up in the reactor. >> now, that explosion that we have been seeing and we saw clouds of what looked like white smoke or steam going into the air injured four workers at that plant. randi. >> andrew, here is what else we know. the death toll is at least 900. 700 more are listed as missing. scores of aftershock rumbled through the country. 6 million households without power. one of the hardest hit places is near sendai, japan.
7:38 am
we have arrived close to the epicenter in the heart of the disaster. anna, if you could, set the scene for us. what are you seeing there? >> reporter: sendai is the closest city to the epicenter, some 130 kilometers away. much of this city has been hit by the tsunami. so far, power and water are out. we are obviously standing in an area with electricity. there are pockets up and running. much of the city is a black-out. i can show you, it is certain what we are witnessing is a devastating scene. a local reporter managed to get out earlier today and said it was a scene of devastation. house after house after house is engulfed by the monster wave that hit the coast at 2:46 p.m. in some parts of this coast,
7:39 am
randi, has come some 5 kilometers inland. the damage is quite enormous. in one particular area, 300 bodies were identified. the death toll stands at 900 but it's expected to surpass 1000. they issued a statement a short time ago saying that 700 people are missing. this is a very, very grave situation, randi. it certainly doesn't look good. >> as we talk about the searches and those missing, are there searches still underway as far as you can tell? are they frantic searches of people looking for their loved ones? >> reporter: i understand there was a massive search operation underway today. helicopters were flying into these areas. it's the only way to access much of this area and there were
7:40 am
people plucked off rooftops. they are stranded and cannot get out. 13 in the rubble. teams were in there. other teams are coming from the united states to help as well as elsewhere from around the world. it's going to be a massive operation. they look through rubble and debris hoping to find a sign of life. i can tell you, it is extremely cold. anybody who is trapped is certainly in a tough, tough situation. >> i'm sure. anna, thank you. let's send it over to andrew now. >> randi, thank you. hundreds of thousands of foreign nationals live in japan. many in tokyo. also across the country. that includes tens of thousands of americans. that's created a huge challenge for the u.s. state department. within time communities cut off communications widely disrupted.
7:41 am
the state department is trying to get answers for families back in the united states. we have a state department producer. she joins us from washington. how are the authorities in the u.s. going about getting in touch and putting people in touch with each other of u.s. citizens in the u.s.? >> well, tens of thousands of americans in japan traveling and living and working there. the state department set up a 24-hour task force at its headquarters to deal with helping americans and mustering the u.s. aid response to this. they have set up a bunch of websites and e-mail addresses where the state department says you can e-mail about a loved one. we are going to put those on the screen now if you have a loved one in japan or the tsunami affected areas. you are encouraged to e-mail the state department. there's a phone number you can use.
7:42 am
phones are done, we know. they are encouraging people to use the social media, sms, e-mail, those types of things to get in touch with a loved one. follow a twitter feed to find out more information about the loved one. state department asking as much information as you have about your family member or friend. medical information, date of birth, location you last know them to be. it's going to help those americans now. there are officials and teams on the ground trying to help. >> yes. it certainly sounds like twitter is lending a lot of support to people trying to get in touch with each other. the u.s. is lending support by air. what can you tell us about that? >> that's right. as we have been discussing, there's a lot of u.s. military response. the helicopters are going to help with the search and rescue. two u.s. urban search and rescue
7:43 am
teams, one from fairfax, virginia. you know they were very instrumental in helping in the haiti earthquake in terms of finding victims alive. hopefully, that will still be the case. the u.s. has a disaster assistance team from the international development on the way trying to work with the japanese in terms of assessing their needs. they are taking the cues from the japanese government. we want to be in the lead in complimenting what they are trying to do. >> thanks for that. now, the effects of the earthquake in japan are being felt just in japan right around the world. air travel is no exception. reynolds wolf will tell us about all the delays, just ahead.
7:44 am
7:45 am
7:46 am
want to bring you up to date on the story about an explosion on a nuclear plant in japan. this is a fast moving story. the cloud of white smoke going up. this is from an explosion that collapsed a roof at that nuclear plant. we don't know what caused that. there has been speculation it may have been a fuel rod for the nuclear reactor melting down or it may have been other causes. certainly, it's created an extremely wiring situation about the level of nuclear radiation that may be escaping from the plants. what's happened is the cooling system for the plants, for this plant, is not working at the moment. it was knocked out and the back-up supplies were knocked out. they have shut down the plant, but it takes some time and the problems are evident as you can see on the screen there. they are battling to bring this under control.
7:47 am
earlier, just about an hour or so ago, the japanese prime minister naoto kan spoke about this. >> translator: they have evacuated 20 miles away from the nuclear reactor. we would like to give careful attention -- >> the real fear here, of course, is that there is an escape of serious levels of radiation. at the moment, the estimates are there is about eight times the normal level of radioactive material around that nuclear reactor. it's difficult to test this and difficult to confirm this. this is what the chief secretary to the cabinet has to say about
7:48 am
that. >> translator: this is not caused by the nuclear reactor. and there will not be any harmful gases emitted by this explosion. the radiation has not changed since the explosion. >> now, that's the chief cabinet secretary there calming fears which have been raising about the level of radioactive material being released from the explosion. there are two nuclear plants which are shutting down and are in -- facing major problems at the moment. this is an enormous story we are going to be following closely here.
7:49 am
it is developing virtually minute-by-minute. >> the prime minister is looking forward to a brighter future as many people are in japan today. it may be hard to believe given the pictures of the devastation, this earthquake in japan is only the fifth largest since recordkeeping began. i'll tell you about the worst of the worst just ahead. [ female announcer ] last year, the u.s. used enough plastic water bottles to stretch around the earth over 190 times.
7:50 am
each brita filter can take up to 300 of those bottles out of the equation. constipated? phillips' caplets use magnesium, an ingredient that works more naturally with your colon than stimulant laxatives,
7:51 am
for effective relief of constipation without cramps. thanks. [ professor ] good morning students. today, we're gonna... welcome back. just about nine minutes before the hour. the past couple of days have reminded us of the devastating power of an earthquake. a disaster still unfolding in japan, a massive earthquake, magnitude 8.9, then this -- a wall of water that swept away people, cars, and homes. anything in its path.
7:52 am
the quake that triggered this was the largest ever in japan and according to the u.s. geological survey's earthquake information center, the fifth strongest since they began keeping records. hard to believe looking at this earthquake there were four others before it. stronger, deadlier, even more threatening. the strongest earthquakes ever recorded. november 4th, 1952, a 9.0 magnitude earthquake hit russia. it triggered a tsunami with waves up to 34 feet high that devastated parts of hawaii. no lives were lost. december 26th, 2004. a 9.1 magnitude underwater earthquake rumbled off the coast of sumatra, that triggered a series of tsunamis that swept ashore in 14 countries. they left thousands injured, thousands missing, and hundreds of thousands homeless in
7:53 am
indonesia, india, sri lanka, and thailand. >> in a moment, and the concrete wall was busted, and we were flushed out. and caught in debris, and the water was crazy. you were up, you were down, you were underneath swimming around with cars, refrigerators, furniture, fallen down trees and everything else. >> reporter: in all, nearly 233,000 people were killed, making it one of the deadliest natural disasters in history. but there are others even worse in the history books. march 27th, 1964, a 9.2 magnitude earthquake struck the prince william sound in alaska. the quake and ensuing tsunami took 128 lives and caused $311 million in damages along the gulf of alaska. towns were crushed, in some cases cracked into pieces.
7:54 am
the worst of all, may 22nd, 1960, a 9.5 magnitude earthquake hit near concepcion, chile. in the wake, a deadly tsunami that hit japan and hawaii. so much power it wiped out nearly 2,000 lives, injured thousands, and left millions homeless. >> the official death toll in this quake so far is at least 900 people with another 700 listed as missing. and that number could rise. if you look at these pictures and are moved to help, we want to help you help. the people in japan suffering and the victims there. you can go to and there you will find organizations that you can donate to, and some ways to help you get involved and help people there. and andrew, you know that a lot of people around the world who are watching these images certainly would like to do that. >> i've had three e-mails while
7:55 am
we've been on air, randi from people saying, can you help us? where do we go to contribute to this? it is really amazing. it is sort of stirring people and getting people involved in this. it is an extraordinary disaster. and please, give generously to help the japanese cause. well, coming up next, some of the most powerful tsunami images at our fingertips. the interactive maps that have been created online to capture this. ♪ i'm not just someone who's quitting with chantix and support... our kids go to school together.
7:56 am
-we work together. -i'm in your cooking class. we play ball together. [ male announcer ] chantix is a non-nicotine pill proven to help people quit smoking. it reduces the urge to smoke. and you can even smoke during the first week. quitting on my own never seemed to be enough. this time it was different. this time i was ready. ready to take control. ready to talk to my doctor. [ male announcer ] some people had changes in behavior, thinking or mood, hostility, agitation, depressed mood and suicidal thoughts or actions while taking or after stopping chantix. if you notice any of these symptoms or behaviors, stop taking chantix and call your doctor right away. tell your doctor about any history of depression or other mental health problems, which could get worse while taking chantix. don't take chantix if you've had a serious allergic or skin reaction to it. if you develop serious allergic or skin reactions, stop taking chantix and see your doctor right away as some of these can be life-threatening. dosing may be different if you have kidney problems. until you know how chantix affects you, use caution when driving or operating machinery. common side effects include nausea, trouble sleeping and unusual dreams. ♪
7:57 am
♪ i'm not just someone who's quitting with chantix and support, -i'm your coworker. -teammate. -friend. -friend. [ male announcer ] over 7 million people nationwide have talked to their doctor about chantix. chances are, you could be one of them. and now through march 31st visit for a limited time money saving offer and for terms and conditions. [ female announcer ] wake up to sweetness with honey nut cheerios cereal. kissed with real honey. and the 100% natural whole grain oats can help lower your cholesterol. you are so sweet to me. bee happy. bee healthy. travel in and out of japan has been a real problem since the earthquake, as you can imagine. >> it certainly has. in the tarmac at the sendai airport officially under water as the tsunami rolled in.
7:58 am
it's not just sendai, delays and cancellations about 180 miles to the south in tokyo. reynolds wolf is back with us now. and reynolds, there are ripples being felt because of the airport delays and closures in japan. i suspect pretty much around the world. >> absolutely. no question about it. but definitely the biggest issue you're going to find will be in japan. it doesn't happen to be in terms of the airports, the railways. there are all kinds of problems that may take weeks, perhaps even months. of course the place hit the hardest is sendai airport. we'll zoom in on that particular location. if you have any familiarity, very similar set-up. you can see the pacific ocean. all of the pacific ocean came on to the stendai airport across te tarmac. and the video we have is compelling. we often speak how it comes onshore like a wave. but it's more than that. it is simply a wall of water that is virtually unstoppable. it's a driving, killing force
7:59 am
that comes onshore and knocks things out of the way. and the damage is going to take quite a while to get back in shape. i'm sure this will be a major point for supplies, for all sorts of materials to come in and help rebuild parts of northeast japan. and it's going to be certainly a very tough endeavor. but the sooner that thing is able to open up in the next couple of weeks and months, it'll make a tremendous difference in putting northeastern japan back together. back to you. >> reynolds, thanks very much for that. countries around the world, indeed offering assistance to japan. coming up, we'll tell you how you can make a difference. stay with us.


disc Borrow a DVD of this show
info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on